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Strengths and Weaknesses

I’m no native (English speaker) by Luna Checchini

I can’t remember a time in my life when I wasn’t fascinated by languages. My favorite doll scared the hell out of me when I first met her because she spoke, but she eventually became my favorite doll nonetheless. She. Not it. I’m Italian, I treat objects as people, get used to that. I spoke …

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The ‘native speaker’ myth: vocabulary

The other day when I was scrolling through FB, I came across this post by Hugh Dellar: It reminded me of the assumption that many students, but also teachers and recruiters, hold; namely, that: a) any ‘native speaker’ knows more vocabulary than any ‘non-native speaker’ can ever hope to know b) as a result, any …

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What makes an effective English teacher? A research project

Last weekend I had the pleasure to present at IATEFL Poland annual conference. The program was full of interesting workshops and talks, and I was particularly interested in seeing Jasmina Sazdovska‘s and Zsuzsanna Soproni‘s presentation What Makes an Effective English Language Teacher? There is so much discussion about ‘native’ and ‘non-native speakers’ that we actually often …

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Get Hired as a ‘Non-Native Speaker’: Your three unique strengths

We hear so much about why ‘native speakers’ are supposedly better teachers that it’s easy to start losing confidence as a ‘non-native speaker’ teacher… It’s easy to forget that as a ‘non-native speaker’ you can also be a great teacher. That you’ve got your unique strengths. And that you can use these to start getting …

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Are ‘native speakers’ better pronunciation models for our students?

This is an important question. Not only because the answer will determine how we teach pronunciation, but also because it lies at the very core of the ‘native speaker’ fallacy, or the belief that a ‘native speaker’ is always a better teacher, which is so rampant in our profession. Our gut feeling might suggest that …

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Native and non-native speaker teachers in Spain by Ben Greensmith

The battle rages in Spain between natives and non-natives. The streets run with blood and Euros fly out of the hands of desperate parents looking for a good teacher for their precious little ones. Working and toiling together in Spain as a native and non-native pair has given us an interesting insight into how the two, completely random coincidences of where you are born, are seen and in turn respected/disrespected in Spain.

Native Speakers aren't better – so don't believe it by Elly Setterfield

[Note from the editor: this post was originally published on Elly’s blog here and is republished here with the full consent of the author] When I started my blog The Best Ticher, I foolishly assumed that I was writing for an audience like my younger self: British (or perhaps American), relatively young (maybe one or two …

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Native-speakerism and the complexity of personal experience: A duoethnographic study

‘Native speakers’ are better at teaching speaking and should be given conversational and high level classes, right? They can’t tell a verb from a noun, though, so don’t ask them to teach any grammar. ‘Non-native speakers’ know the grammar better and since they know the students’ L1, they should teach lower levels, right? They’re never …

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English as an International Language – lesson plan by Sarah Priestley

This lesson plan can be adapted to any level from Intermediate to C2, depending on the difficulty of the audio recordings you use in the listening stage 3 and the vocabulary used in stage 4.  I did it in an 80 minute lesson with a C2 adult class.  If you’re short of time you could …

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'The N factor': spreading equality in your workplace – by Sarah Priestley

After watching Silvana Richardson’s IATEFL 2016 plenary ‘ The native factor, the haves and have-nots’ this April I immediately asked myself what I could do to raise awareness of some of the issues Silvana highlighted.  Through meeting Marek on Twitter we started chatting about my ideas.  So, this post is to share with you the …

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